The Thunder wore its navy blue alternate uniform Friday night. OKC entered the game 4-4 wearing the uniform and will wear all-blue three more times this season — at San Antonio (March 11), at Indiana (April 5) and at Golden State (April 11).
The Thunder wore all-blue at home twice, beating Detroit (Nov. 12) and Phoenix (Dec. 31). OKC two road victories wearing the alternates came against Brooklyn (Dec. 4) and Dallas (Jan. 18), when Durant scored a career-high 52 points. Road losses in all-blue came at Minnesota (Dec. 20), Washington (Jan. 7), Los Angeles Lakers (Jan. 27) and Utah (Feb. 12).
Nuggets coach George Karl said he walked by Durant after Friday morning's shoot-around and told him: “You are doing a hell of a job. You are getting better every month.”
“It's not every year; he gets better every month,” Karl added. “The games I've watched, he has looked like Magic Johnson out there. He is making passes I've never seen before, and if he puts that in his game, it just makes his touches harder to cover. … He and LeBron (James) are great examples of being efficient players, not only high scorers, but efficient touches.”
With 4:30 left in the second quarter, Durant picked up his 12th technical foul of the season. One-game suspensions commence on the 16th technical. … After converting 130 of 138 (. 942) free throws in the previous five games, the Thunder missed six of its first 17 (. 647) attempts against Denver. … OKC will not practice Saturday in preparation for Sunday's 2:30 p.m. contest against the Los Angeles Clippers at Staples Center to be televised on ABC.
Karl on the key to teaching consistency to young players: “It's a combination of a pat on the back and a kick in the butt. It's six inches of difference. … The base of success is fundamental, solid and simple.”